YORK Civic Trust has welcomed news that the Secretary of State has dismissed plans for more than 500 homes to be built on land next to Askham Bog in York.

The trust donated £5,000 to the campaign to fight the plans - and a spokesman congratulated the Yorkshire Wildlife Trust (YWT), which manages the nature reserve, on the success of its work to oppose the development.

He said: “Perhaps it is even more wonderful news given the current Covid-19 situation, when it appears so many people, old and young, are taking a greater interest in the the natural environment in their neighbourhoods and the city, and from it significant wellbeing benefits.

“What better an example to have of the vibrancy of nature in all its glory, than Askham Bog.

“The trust is very much pleased to have done its bit by donating £5,000 to your campaign coffers in the early stages of the appeal, but really the accolade very much goes to the hard endeavour of the YWT, the countless local and international supporters that came to defend Askham Bog, and not forgetting professional advocates who helped see off the developer’s arguments."

City of York Council leader, Cllr Keith Aspden, also welcomed the news, saying: “Askham Bog is an incredibly important site for many residents in the city.”